• The William E. Self Library, I auction at Christies

    Sale 2153

    The William E. Self Library, Important English and American Literature

    4 December 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 60

    [DICKENS, Charles -- NICHOLAS NICKLEBY]. BROWNE, Hablot K. ("Phiz"). Original steel plate of "Madame Mantalini intruduces Kate to Miss Knag." London, Summer 1838. 228 x 140 mm. Fitted in a red morocco folding case by Charles. J. Sawyer with an impression of the plate facing it. Laid in is a typed letter signed from Charles Wood, Managing Director of Chapman and Hall stating that this plate was engraved by "Hablot K. Browne ('Phiz') for Messrs Chapman &Hall Ltd., in whose care they have reseted ever since, and by whom their authenticity is hereby guaranteed."

    Price Realised  

    [DICKENS, Charles -- NICHOLAS NICKLEBY]. BROWNE, Hablot K. ("Phiz"). Original steel plate of "Madame Mantalini intruduces Kate to Miss Knag." London, Summer 1838. 228 x 140 mm. Fitted in a red morocco folding case by Charles. J. Sawyer with an impression of the plate facing it. Laid in is a typed letter signed from Charles Wood, Managing Director of Chapman and Hall stating that this plate was engraved by "Hablot K. Browne ('Phiz') for Messrs Chapman &Hall Ltd., in whose care they have reseted ever since, and by whom their authenticity is hereby guaranteed."

    "Madame Mantalini intruduces Kate to Miss Knag" appeared as plate 10, to face p.157 in part 5 of Nicholas Nickleby. Published from April 1838 to October 1839, part 5 was issued in August 1838. "The series of forty plates contained in the work, were designed and etched by Phiz. Following on the experience gained in the publication of 'Pickwick,' and in anticipation of a monthly circulation reaching 40,000 to 50,000 copies, the Author and Publishers decided to continue the system of duplicate etchings for each subject. When, however, the circulation began to show definite signs of still further expansion, and owing to the fact that Dickens was never beforehand with his manuscript, it became necessary to have the plates etched in triplicate, and, in several cases after Part 6, in quadruplicate" (Hatton & Cleaver). There are no priority to the duplicates -- they were made out of necessity to accommodate demand and show no significant variations. According to Hatton & Cleaver, 3 etchings of each of the plates in Part 5 were made.


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